Henryk M. Gorecki

The oratorio Sanctus Adalbertus by the Polish composer Henryk Górecki will have its world premiere tonight in Krakow, Poland. The work is scored for soprano, baritone, mixed choir and symphony orchestra and will be performed by the National Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Polish Radio Choir from Krakow and the Krakow Philharmonic Choir conducted by Jacek Kaspszyk, with Wioletta Chodowicz and Artur Ruciński as soloists.

The oratorio was composed in 1997-1998, but never finished entirely. The score has recently be completed for performance by Mikolaj Gorecki, the composer’s son who is also a composer.

Sanctus Adalbertus is a tribute to St. Adalbert (ca. 956-997), a Bohemian missionary to the Hungarians, Poles, and Prussians. He was martyred in his efforts to convert the Baltic Prussians to Christianity. He is the composer of Bogurodzica, the oldest known Polish hymn. He is one of Poland’s patron saints.

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